US Capitol attack

In Twitter comeback, Trump denounces the rioters he coddled a day ago

Gelo Gonzales
In Twitter comeback, Trump denounces the rioters he coddled a day ago

TRUMP. Trump concedes but remains defiant, saying 'But I also want you to know that our incredible journey is only just beginning

Photo by Gelo Gonzales/Rappler

Trump calls the siege a 'heinous attack' a day after he told the rioters, 'We love you, you're all very special'

US President Donald Trump is back on Twitter, Friday, January 8, Philippine time.

In his comeback tweet, he changes his tune, finally denouncing the US Capitol rioters that he had incited himself, and finally offering the closest thing to a concession, promising a transition of power on January 20 – but also never mentioning President-elect Joe Biden’s name. 

Trump called the siege a “heinous attack” and that he is “outraged by the violence, lawlessness, and mayhem.” 

“The demonstrators who infiltrated the Capitol have defiled the seat of American democracy. To those who engaged in the acts of violence and destruction, you do not represent our country. And to those who broke the law, you will pay,” he said.

Trump did not address his role in inciting the mob, for which he is now facing calls for removal, with many fearing what he may still do in his last weeks in power. 

A day ago, the president condoned the rioters in a video, telling them, “We love you, you’re all very special.” The same video had caused Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to suspend Trump on their platforms for repeating the same lies about electoral fraud, which had an incendiary effect on an already emotional situation. 

Facebook and Instagram later extended the initial 24-hour Trump ban “indefinitely” according to CEO Mark Zuckerberg, lasting at least for the final two weeks of his presidency. Twitter had a 12-hour ban, which has lapsed, and Trump is back on the platform. The newest video message has not been slapped with any disinformation warning label by the platform. 

Trump, in the new video, did claim that he deployed the National Guard immediately to contain the riots but reports from CNN and New York Times said that Trump had resisted sending the military.

Trump also finally conceded to Biden saying that the “new administration will be inaugurated on January 20” and his “focus now turns to ensuring a smooth orderly and seamless transition of power.”

Trump finished on a defiant note saying, “But I also want you to know that our incredible journey is only just beginning.” – Rappler.com

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Gelo Gonzales

Gelo Gonzales is Rappler’s technology editor. He covers consumer electronics, social media, emerging tech, and video games.